Sunday, November 25, 2012

San Francisco Coffee and Chocolate Staycation - Day 4 of 4

A special shout-out to 24-hour fitness, who has offered free access to its gym and classes all this long weekend. It's the only way to survive holiday eating - and chocolate tasting! Another guideline staycationing is trying to walk or bike everywhere. You'll be more immersed - and have a healthy experience too!

Amazing hot chocolate with a side of Bay shrimp tartines!

After yoga, our tour of San Francisco widened a bit today as we stopped by Chocolate Lab cafe in the Dogpatch neighborhood for brunch. Friendly staff and dog-themed decor (get it?) compliment a short but diverse menu of savory and sweet creations from the mind of famed local chocolatier Michael Recchiuti.  Opened just 2 weeks ago, we weren't sure if we should expect a savory meal, desserts, or hot chocolate. It just so happened that we got all three! The Bay Shrimp tartine, plate of pickled vegetables, root beer float (malt ice cream, chocolate sauce, root beer), and hot chocolate all fit together better than I would've imagined. The shrimp tartines have a subtle mixed of sweet, bitter, and salty that make the hot chocolate a perfect accompaniment.

Chocolate Labs one-of-a-kind root beer float
So good I couldn't put it down!

The hot chocolate at Chocolate Lab stood out as the most delectable treat we sampled during our staycation this week. It's rich and bittersweet, almost as thick as Mayan hot chocolate, and it goes well with EVERYTHING :) Thankfully Recchiuti sells it at his neighboring chocolate storefront called "Little Nibs", which was a mandatory stopover so we could take home a box of joy for later. If you want a gift of amazing San Francisco hot chocolate for the holidays, let me know! :)

Noir truffles from Recchiuti's shop Little Nibs
The hot chocolate was far too dangerous to take home :)

After stopping home to drop off the precious chocolate package and pick up laptops, we biked over to Flywheel Coffee Roasters in the Haight. Olga's Madagascar pour-over was a bit more palatable than others she had this week, but still a little sour. Perhaps these single-origin roasts to a bit too intense for our naive palettes. My medium-roast Tasmania Peaberry was good, but later I noticed a very special contraption they have for slow-cold-brewing ice coffee. This I want to try next time!

Olga at Flywheel while I keep an eye on the tower of ice coffee gadgetry

Note: every single cafe we visited this weekend - without exception - takes the Square payment system. It seems to be taking off like gangbusters!


Karen Wilson said...

We once had shrimp in chocolate sauce at a tapas restaurant in Toronto. I didn't care for it, but Mark liked it. So I guess there is something to mixing shrimp and chocolate. :)

Dave Grenetz said...

There's something to be said about mixing anything and chocolate :-D